An Artist’s Growth

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A few days ago, I was perusing the work of Karen Barbe (an amazing textile designer / photographer based in Chile) and came across the sweetest story that paints a perfect portrait of growth, innocence and the art of discovering talents anew:

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She writes:

“During a summer in the late eighties I learned to finger knit and went crazy knitting metres and metres of scarves and headbands using the brightest colours I could find. I made lots. I didn’t sell any. But that wasn’t the point. I needed to document my work so I scouted for the most exotic location (at home) and recruited my younger sister as a model. I styled her outfit and began shooting but the camera jammed. While having the camera pointed to the ground, I tried to fix the jam pressing the shutter repeatedly without realising I was actually taking pictures! Hahaha These shoes shots look rather cool now anyway, don’t they?”

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I love that Karen can celebrate this moment of creative exploration. Growing up, I had a slew of jobs and a stash of mistakes. And although it would be easy to burn the proverbial photos and gloss over that time period completely, I think it’s far healthier to sit and ruminate on those moments – when our creativity was ripe and failures aplenty.

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Because even though we’re no longer children, we’re still learning and growing and changing. And someday, we’ll look back on today and realize that – like Karen – we may have been furiously snapping photos and misunderstanding technology, but we were on a journey to something beautiful.

Image Credits: Karen Barbe

p.s. Another story of creative self-discovery.

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